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Author Topic: ENG Mixers as Front end  (Read 2242 times)

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Offline RichT

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ENG Mixers as Front end
« on: January 31, 2011, 01:38:02 PM »
I'm looking at moving into some location broadcast work and I'm looking at getting a mixer with direct outs to replace my Sonosax SX-M2, but would like something I can still use the preamps for high quality music recording (mainly classical chamber/acoustic).  I was fairly set on the Sonosax SX-M32, although it's considerably more expensive with the direct outs and camera feed, and only 3 channels. 

My shortlist is:
Sonosax SX-M32 (great preamps, know the sound, very good ADC), but expensive and only 3 channels

s/h SQN 4S mkIV with direct out mod (by SQN)- Like the preamps and ergonomics for dialogue, haven't tried it for music. Cheaper

Sound Devices 552- 5 channels with recorder (which takes timecode in).  Preamps are transformer balanced, may add colouration.  Considerably cheaper in the US (even including VAT, shipping and duty)

Fostex FM4- haven't tried it and I'm a bit dubious about the metering.  Transformer balanced inputs

Has anyone used any of the above for music?  I'm going to see if I can try these out in the next couple of weeks

There's also the AETA Mixy, although I don't think there are any UK dealers




 
« Last Edit: January 31, 2011, 01:42:42 PM by RichT »

Offline hammerhorror

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Re: ENG Mixers as Front end
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2011, 02:36:39 PM »
I own a Sound Devices 552 and love using it for broadcast audio work. I don't think there is a better built ENG mixer out there for the money. The build quality is solid, the feature set is impressive, has a built in stereo recorder and it has five channels with direct outputs.

I have also used the 552 for some onstage jazz recordings. It worked and sounded great for this application. The only downside some people may see with using the 552 as a primary concert recorder is the lack of a display screen. This doesn't bother me though and hasn't been a problem.

I also own a Tascam DR-680 which I pair up with the 552 when I need more than two channels.

If your primary goal is to get a great field mixer, and secondary goal is to use it for musical recordings, I think that you will be very happy with your purchase. I know that I am.
Mics: Schoeps MK4 & MK41, AKG CK63 (Naiant Actives)
 
Preamps: Naiant KCY Littlebox

Recorders: Sound Devices 664, Sony PCM-M10

Offline RichT

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Re: ENG Mixers as Front end
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2011, 05:12:28 PM »
Thanks very much for your feedback, I'm actually looking at it as trying to get the best of both worlds really- I get odd bits of work doing concert recording but the broadcast stuff is new to me, I've just done a short course and I'm probably going to be working for free for a while.

I don't see a problem using the recorder without a display, as long as I can see the red light is on, the meters and I can monitor what's being recorded.  It's going to be paired with an R-44 for the time being.

Is it possible for the 552 to accept a word clock signal at all?

Offline hammerhorror

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Re: ENG Mixers as Front end
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2011, 10:51:25 AM »
Is it possible for the 552 to accept a word clock signal at all?

No, unfortunately the 552 is not capable of accepting a word clock signal.

I've been using this breakaway cable when I need a time code signal fed from the video camera to my 552 mixer for sync purposes:
http://www.trewaudio.com/store/product.php?productid=1080&cat=13&page=1
Mics: Schoeps MK4 & MK41, AKG CK63 (Naiant Actives)
 
Preamps: Naiant KCY Littlebox

Recorders: Sound Devices 664, Sony PCM-M10

 

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